Aug 23, 2010 11:57AM NancyD wrote:
I've had root canal procedures on both sides of my mouth many years ago (at least 20) but only developed cancer on my left side.
All Topics → Forum: Complementary and Holistic Medicine and Treatment → Topic: Root canals and breast cancer
Posted on: Aug 23, 2010 11:51AM - edited Aug 23, 2010 11:55AM by dlb823
Can anyone explain to me the link suspected by some holistically-minded people between root canals and developing breast cancer? My dentist is recommending that I have a root canal. I've tried to research a theory I've heard in the past about a root canal precipitating bc on the same meridian, but frankly, I don't quite get it. Does anyone really understand it, and does anyone think there's any truth to it? By the way, I had a root canal maybe 15 years ago, but have never been able to form a mental link to it being a factor in my bc nearly as much as I can family history, stress and HRT. But, at the same time, I'm still kind of leery to proceed, in case there is something to it.
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Aug 23, 2010 11:57AM NancyD wrote:
I've had root canal procedures on both sides of my mouth many years ago (at least 20) but only developed cancer on my left side.
Aug 23, 2010 12:04PM dlb823 wrote:
Yea, I kind of think the theory is silly, but meridians make sense for acupuncture. I just wish I understood the "science" behind how a tooth root can be linked to breast health. Deanna
Aug 23, 2010 12:31PM - edited Aug 23, 2010 12:31PM by mathteacher
Wow, that investigation was fast. Conclusions have already been drawn? Putting a dead organ back in the mouth is fine? Nobody wants to investigate the stomach meridian with respect to the breast?
Okay, I'm supposed to be working anyway so I should just butt out.
Aug 23, 2010 12:35PM NancyD wrote:
No conclusions drawn here at all...just one person telling actual experience that doesn't seem to support the theory and then another wondering how the meridians work from tooth to breast. The lines are open...
Aug 23, 2010 12:55PM - edited Aug 23, 2010 12:57PM by dlb823
mathteacher, no conclusions, although I understand why you might have taken it that way from what I wrote. All I meant was to continue the conversation in the hope that someone who actuallly understands the theory can explain it to me. What do you mean about putting a dead organ back in the mouth? Is a tooth or a root an organ? And how is that any different from replacing tooth enamel with a filling or, for that matter, breast tissue with something that was not there originally? I'm really looking for help in understanding this, and also wondering if there is an alternative if you don't have a root canal? Is pulling the tooth the only other option? Deanna
Aug 23, 2010 01:12PM Lowrider54 wrote:
I don't have any input on the debate as I hadn't heard of the tooth root - breast cancer connention.
If the nerve is damaged in the tooth, a root canal is the option or pulling the tooth and having a partial, permanent bridge or implant. My uncle was my dentist for years and I have had three root canals - two on the right side, one on the left. Breast cancer formed in the left breast. I beleive in my case, it was blunt force trauma that triggered the cells - another therory and no physician I have talked to would absolutely confirm that it can happen although it could, in therory.
In a root canal, there is only removal of the nerve tissue, not the tooth and then root ends are sealed and the canals are filled with a non-toxic substance.
A caution - if you are being treated with any of the bone strenghteners - Zometa, Aredia, etc - there is a risk of jaw issues with major dental work and this would be major dental work. Certainly check with all treating physicians first.
Aug 23, 2010 01:52PM - edited Aug 23, 2010 01:53PM by dlb823
Thanks for your helpful information, Lowrider. I wonder what the substance is they use to fill the canal? I'll have to ask. Perhaps that's what the root canal theory is at least partly based on -- exposure to whatever substance that is. I've also heard the theory about blunt force trauma, and it also makes perfect sense to me -- that a hard enough blow could damage the dna of some cells and make them more vulnerable in the future to stress, etc. Come to think of it, I also had a very hard blow from a steering wheel to the breast in which I later developed bc.
So many theories and questions!!! Deanna
Aug 23, 2010 04:29PM hlth4513 wrote:
I found this write up that talks about Weston Price's research.
I know that VIVRE feels very strongly about the dental connection and has attended seminars on the subject. You may want to PM her for some input.
Aug 23, 2010 06:14PM Fire44fly wrote:
It's funny I just read about this recently in a couple of different places. "The Complete Natural Medicine Guide to Breast Cancer" by Sat Dharam Kaur, ND and also I believe there was reference to root canals and BC in the Suzanne Sommers book "Knock Out" by one of the Dr's but I can't remember which one.
It talked about something similar to what is already posted. The root canal can harbour a bacterial or parasite infection that affect the immune system. They refer to the fact that the teeth most directly related to the breast are the two teeth to the front of the wisdon teeth on both sides of the upper jaw. It may manifest as a problem in another area of the body.
Having BC certainly makes you think twice about any procedure doesn't it? Good luck with your search. BTW... I had a root canal in the years prior to my diagnosis in the exact tooth they referred to.
Aug 23, 2010 08:01PM vivre wrote:
As Beth said, I have spent a lot of time on this subject after I met a holistic dentist who insisted I study the connection. I went to an all day seminar on dental health, with many doctors who talked about the effects of mercury on cancer, heart disease and autism. There was a lot of evidence, and a lot of it was over my head, but I was facinated. There was even a chemist there who explained how he researched mercury toxicity and how his tests prove the links. THAT was really over my head, but sure made sense anyway.
It is true that doctors who dared to speak out had their liscenses taken away by the ADA. Can you imagine how many lawsuits would happen if people knew the mercury was put into their mouths, AFTER it was proven dangerous. One of these doctors was Hal Huggins who has written a couple of books on the subject and whom I heard speak at this seminar and again at the health freedom expo where he announced that he has been able to identify 4 specific bacteria present in teeth with root canals taken from women with bc. It was enough to convince me. I got a consult with three holistic dentists and each one of them showed me where the infection was festering under the root canal that I had done in my 20's. So I had it pulled and, sure enough it was rotten underneath. Most dentists do not even know how to look for these infections. Dr. Huggins said implants are just as dangerous. It does not matter what side the tooth is on vs. the side of the bc. Bacteria keeps the immune system in constant overdrive, which is why so many of us who had bc were "never sick". Our system was so busy it was hitting all the little stuff, but just did not have enough left to knock out the free radicals, which enabled them to morph into cancer. I have lots of links on my website if you cannot find them on your own.
BTW- since there are so many dentists who are now practicing holistic dentistry, the ADA now leaves them alone. But it is still infuriating that they will tell you it is illegal to sell mercury and it is toxic, but they still say it is safe to put in our mouths! And don't get me started on those stupid light bulbs that are supposed to save us all from global warming when you need a hasmat suit if one of them breaks.
Nancy, I went to an irridologist, who I was totally skeptical of, at the Health Freedom expo. My girlfriend insisted I have him "read" my eyes because he was so accurate with her. The guy went through my whole health history and was spot on! It blew me away. He even told me I had very difficult labors, which I did .How did he know that! And he mentioned my tooth issue and brought out a chart that showed which root canal was linked to which part of the body. BINGO again. Some things just cannot be explained.
Aug 23, 2010 09:38PM - edited Aug 23, 2010 09:38PM by dlb823
I am fascinated with everyone's input.
MOTC, I don't think having had a root canal automatically means you get breast cancer, nor does not having one assure you of not getting it. From what I'm gathering here, a root canal may just be one more immune system stressor for some of us, especially if there is inflammation, which is an accepted risk factor for all sorts of health conditions, including bc.
mathteacher, excellent information and excellent idea to look for a holistic dentist!
Beth & Nancy, thank you for those links. I intend to read them all. And yes, Nancy, having bc certainly has made many of us realize that medical advice isn't always perfect, or even correct. My excellent dentist, who is Harvard trained, had never heard of this possible connection, and while he promised to research it, I swear I learn more from my bc-sisters here!
Vivre, I had my mercury fillings removed years ago by a dentist in Vail. But thinking about the hidden infection, it's interesting that there also seems to be a commonality amongst many breast cancer patients regarding having had some type of autoimmune condition, pre-bc. I did, and there was a recent thread where many women shared about having one. For some of us, perhaps this also goes back to unseen dental infection (I have had 1 root canal in the past), and the unexplained reason why our immune systems were in high gear?
Thank you all for such great information! Deanna
Aug 23, 2010 09:50PM Deirdre1 wrote:This is a very interesting thread - especially since if there is a bacteria, such as staph in the body, and assuming that the staph doesn't enter the blood and kill us the body normally creates a shell around the infection.. very much like the shell that is formed around the implants we put in our body! So if the body can protect itself by putting a defensive shell around an invading oranism (and this is a proven medical fact) wouldn't it also surround the tooth with the infection in the same way? Just a comment nothing more really to add - just a very interesting thread. Perhaps this is also why for many years women who had implants claimed they had auto immune disorders and then connected those disorders to the implants - some even swear that when they remove the implants the auto immune disorder becomes b9. Of course this has been disproven by the FDA - but then I don't put too much stock in the FDA either!!! Best, Deirdre
Aug 23, 2010 10:01PM kellyj wrote:
Hmm, Perio disease is a much bigger problem. A large percentage of the population have the disease and don't realize the systemic harm. Large amounts of bacteria are present throughout the mouth with easy access to the blood stream. Since the bacteria have easy access to the blood stream, it can be linked to cardiovascular problems at the very least. I would start there if I were a holistic dentist. A root canal is localized. Plenty of women get root canals and never have breast cancer. Wouldn't a man who has had a root canal be at higher risk for breast cancer too?
Aug 24, 2010 12:59PM dlb823 wrote:
Nancy, I don't recall reading specific research on this, but there was a fascinating thread here not too long ago entitled anyone out there with auto-immune/chronic pain issues before dx?
I don't know if that link will work for you, but I just found it with a search, and will bump it for you so that it will appear in Active Topic for awhile.
When I have time, I'll go look through some of my bc & nutrition books to see if there are any references to this sort of situation, but I know from that thread it sounded incredibly common to me. Deanna
Aug 26, 2010 06:47AM TaminMo wrote:
THANK YOU all for this info.
After completeing radiation in 2008, I went through 2 root canals , it took many months to complete. One tooth had an infection that had antibiotics packed into it for several weeks.
in Dec 2010, diagnosed with cancer again. BMX in Feb with immediate TE, in March I was hospitaled with infection in TE due to rootcanal, had that tooth extracted. In June 2010, something in my jaw didn't feel right, so after almost loosing my expander I decided to check it out, turned out during root canal they had missed a canal, I was like a sitting duck for another infection, so I had it extracted as well
Bth root canals were removed within a year and a half.
wow if only I would have known about the dangers before hand, I may have been able to avoid cancer and would have my breasts.
This is very imprtant info, It could save our loved ones from experiencing the trauma that I have lived through.
Aug 30, 2010 05:34AM Twinmom77 wrote:
If you google root canal and cancer link there's a ton of websites that come up. It has to do with blood not being able to get to the area to clean it out and then bacteria developes and basically there's a constant infection...I don't know, something like that.
I never believed there was a connection either. From my own experience, I had a root canal about 10 years ago. A few years after having it I got an x-ray and they said I had an infection in there, a lesion on the bone. So I had it redone, but still had problems with it. Then I got dianosed. Hmmm. Root canal left side, breast cancer left side...and I come to find out later they're on the same meridian. That was it for me. I had that tooth pulled and had all my mercury fillings taken out by a biological dentist, who, btw, went from not being sure about root canals to being convinced of the connection just because of the amount of patients he has seen it happen to.
Aug 31, 2010 02:22PM dlb823 wrote:
Thanks, Twinmom! The more I hear, the more I think there could be something to the infection/inflammation/lowered immune system connection -- at least for some of us -- which I don't think is nearly as weird and out there as a link between root canals and breast cancer may sound when you first hear it (MOTC's reaction, which I totally get.).
Coincidentally, I just got this email about a program NaturalNews is doing that may include this information. I'll try to catch it, but I'm really bad about getting sidetracked and forgetting. Here's the info. If anyone else is interested and listens in, could you please let us know if anything specific to this discussion is covered?
Reverse cavities, avoid root canal and tooth extractions plus much more... Meet Our Guest, (video) Nadine Artemis - tooth care expert. Nadine will reveal her 8-step program for the healthiest mouth you ever had. Plus, we'll have a "Q and A" session - after the show - for our LIVE audience. Date: Thursday - Sept. 2, 2010 Time: 6 pm (PDT) / 9 pm (EDT) Phone #: 760-569-7676 Access Code: 815676#
Sep 1, 2010 09:40PM Luna5 wrote:
Deanna.. I struggled for at least 3 years with a tooth that had a crown and then a tricky root canal with a bent canal and an extra canal...even had an apicoectomy to fix the problem so the tooth wouldn't need to be extracted and then got breast cancer on the same meridian. Can't prove there was a connection. My dentist, endodontist and oral surgeon all think it is nonsense. My oral surgeon also believes that the constant infection in that tooth could not travel to my chest ????? My plastic surgeon and I became believers.
I had numerous infections in my breast reconstruction until I had my one root canal tooth removed. I read and read articles on line about root canal teeth harboring infection that comes and goes. Even though the x-ray showed perfectly healed under one root and "we think it is healing" under the other root....both roots had infection under them which was not visible until the surgeon removed the tooth. He cleaned all the way into the bone and then did bone grafting. Now the adjacent tooth with only a crown on it feels the same as the root canal tooth felt...not awful...but just noticeable all the time. I'm worried that the infection being there for 3 years may have hidden somehow in or under the adjacent tooth. I have already had the crown removed for better x-rays and have ordered a ceramic crown instead of the part gold crown that was there....It still doesn't feel perfect...could still end up having the tooth removed. May have some more x-rays done before putting the permanent crown in place. I'm even taking antibiotics.
From everything I have read on line about root canal teeth...I will never have another one. I only have one other crown besides the one I am fearful for now so I am taking extra special care of my teeth. I never want to go the failed root canal route again. It is miserable...read about an apicoectomy if you want to see something gross. My husband just had a root canal, though and my oral surgeon had one. They both think it is fine to have them.
I'm still not sure about the permanent implants either but may do at least one since the tooth I had removed is next to the back one. If I remove the back one...I don't know if I will replace it. I am told that our bodies "love" titanium (posts)...but it is still a metal. If I do replace it, I will only use ceramic tops even though my insurance only pays for the cheaper ones.
You may remember my earlier posts about my 8 surgeries of which 4 were due to infection which my PS and I came to believe had to come from the tooth as there was no other logical explanation.
Sep 2, 2010 07:40AM pickle wrote:
Interesting topic. I have had 11 root canals. I have veneers on my teeth and most got infected from the trauma to the teeth so I ended up with root canals. I don't know if it's a possible link to BC or not. I had MX and 2 reconstruction surgeries and my surgeons were amazed at how quickly I healed. No complications at all.
Sep 2, 2010 03:56PM eileen1955 wrote:
Fascinating topic going on here. Let me just add to the brainstorming, even tho I have no scientific methodolgy to back up my guesses.
Pregnant women get swollen bleeding gums due to elevated levels the hormone progesterone. bc can be positive for progesterone.
Some of us have had multiple root canals b/c kids in the 60's were treated with fillings that contained aluminum. So, b/f the root canals, we had aluminum exposure.
Pts with mitral valve prolapse have to pre-dedicate prior to dental work. This is b/c bacteria can easily enter the bloodstream and cause infection of the valve.
That's all I can think of for now. May be there is some link.
Sep 2, 2010 05:11PM - edited Sep 2, 2010 05:13PM by althea
Deanna, here's a link to some information you might find enlightening
Sep 2, 2010 08:07PM kellyj wrote:
I can't believe Dr. Price's study. It is ludicrous. Common sense tells me that periodontal disease would access the blood stream faster. It is a constant infection of the mouth. Why wouldn't these "holistic dentists" focus on this? Doesn't make any sense to me.
Sep 3, 2010 12:54PM - edited Sep 3, 2010 03:36PM by dlb823
I see some excellent information has been added! Thank you to everyone who has a perspective on this question. I really respect and appreciate everyone's input.
althea, thanks for the pertinent link! I've quickly skimmed it, but hope to go back and read it more carefully soon.
kellyj, I don't know why more attention isn't given to total oral health as a possible risk factor for bc. That's a great question.
pickle, your comments are also thought-provoking. If hidden infection in a root canal could increase our risk of developing bc, and if you've had 11 root canals, it seems as if your overall health might be compromised so that you would not be such a quick healer. I guess if there is a connection between root canals and bc, it may be like any other assault on our bodies -- some people have worse reactions than others, maybe depending on what else is going on with our immune systems, lifestyle choices, etc.
Eileen, I really like your sort of free-association brainstorming train of thought! So many times, I've wondered if that's what's missing from bc research -- scientists who aren't simply engaged in the existing avenues of research, but could be open to really brainstorming a wide range of cause and prevention possibilities. Maybe I'm naive, but I don't understand why every scientific breakthrough or advance is so complex and difficult to understand for anyone other than a research scientist. I just keep thinking there must be simpler answers that lead to the complex cellular reactions all those scientists are trying to identify, but which never seem to hold a total answer to prevention or the promise of a real cure. Deanna
Sep 3, 2010 03:09PM mathteacher wrote:
I think what you say gets to the heart of why research is going at a snail's pace. Most researchers seem to focusing on killing cells rather than what caused the vulnerability to cancer in the first place. I think there may be multiple reasons but when you add to that list, a long-running infection in the jaw bone, it's just one more thing that's avoidable.
Having read the research, I won't take the chance of keeping a hard-to-reach infection in my body. Too risky. Others may feel more comfortable.
Sep 5, 2010 07:07PM Luna5 wrote:
mathteacher...what is your opinion on crowns? I had my gold topped crown removed so we could get a better look at the tooth underneath since it was sort of bothering me and is next to where my root canal was before I had it extracted. I've already ordered a ceramic crown and will try to get an x-ray from the fancy new machine the endodontist has now before I actually have the permanent crown put on.......BUT.... I still have this nagging feeling that I should just have that tooth extracted also. BUT then I have to decide about tooth implants for the space that is there now and for the possible space if I have the adjacent tooth extracted although that one is the back one and could probably stay open. Implants may be as bad as root canals. I don't know.
Sep 10, 2010 03:38PM kastbury wrote:
I had a root canal infection the same time that I was diagnosed with IDC. It was on the same side as my breast cancer and it was the second to the last molar, which is considered the mammary tooth on the acupuncture pathways. The root canal was about 9 years old. Apparently, your immune system can't get to the tooth as there is no blood supply. The tooth has thousands of tubes that a virus, bacteria, etc. can live in without the threat of your immune system. These parasites give off toxin which may be what causes the breast cancer or it may be the parasite itself that finds safe harbor in your tooth and then can reinfect you???? It was too much of a coincidence for me so I had the tooth taken out, I didn't want to take the chance. Also, I know the Gerson Institute makes their patients get rid of all their root canals too. I also think that birth control pills have to do with my breast cancer, but I am going to have to check out another discussion for that.
Sep 10, 2010 04:08PM Claire_in_Seattle wrote:
Get the root canal!!!! Because you don't want to go the implant route unless you have to. I have one root canal, two implants. Implants were to 1) replace a baby tooth that had long outlived its usefulness and 2) replace a tooth that split in half (but never even had a cavity....bummer).
Having implants is a wretched experience because you have to wait six months for the bone to grow into the implant and because they do things like pound on your jaw with a hammer to insert. A root canal is over quickly, and they can put a crown on top. Once they do, it's like having your old tooth back. I am hoping mine lasts as long as I live.
BTW - my implants are doing just great.
For those who haven't had both, w/o insurance a root canal and crown costs about $1500, an implant w/crown about $5000. And don't expect your dental insurance to go far with either one.